Culinary Ottawa There's some fun stuff cookin' in Ottawa's kitchens!
The neighbourhood known as Hintonburg, located along Wellington Street West, is gaining a reputation as the hip place to eat and drink in Canada's capital. The Wellington Gastropub has an excellent beer and wine list matched to a menu that changes almost daily! You'll find French cuisine with a Newfoundland twist at Petit Bill's Bistro. The dreamy Absinthe offers a mean steak frites while Allium's Monday night tapas are lineup-worthy.
The urban element features cooking and wine courses in a former fire station, or you can grab a great cup of fairtrade coffee or tea at local coffee chain Bridgehead. Tennessy Willems' wood-burning oven bakes each pizza to perfection. Nearby is family-friendly Hintonburger, with the traditional burgers, fries, onion rings and pogos (corn dogs) you'd expect. More recent additions include Burnt Butter Italian Kitchen and the impressive Back Lane Café.
Suzie Q Doughnuts - including maple bacon - are sold from a tiny shack in a parking lot while Tacolot serves delicious tacos to waiting hipsters. Simply Raw Express offers organic raw treats to go or you can stop for a local pint at Hintonburg PublicHouse or 10Fourteen or catch some awesome live music at the vintage Elmdale Tavern.
The Great Canadian Theatre Company is home to Viva Loca, a café with a wide selection of high quality locallyproduced fine food products, as well as a yummy café menu. Thyme & Again is a similar gem. Another neighborhood pillar is the outdoor Parkdale Market, open 7 days a week through October. In 2011, the Savour Ottawa Field House opened nearby, offering all-local products Thursday through Sunday until mid-October.
Hearty congratulations to Chef Marc Lépine of Atelier for his impressive victory at the Canadian Culinary Championships in mid-February. Having won the Ottawa edition of the competition — also known as Gold Medal Plates as it supports Olympic athletes—in November, Marc faced down 8 other regional winners to be named champion! But what's even more impressive is that 25 of Ottawa's best chefs supported Marc by holding a "Takeover Weekend" while he was away so that Marc didn't have to close down on one of the busiest weekends of the year. The chefs volunteered their time (and some ingredients) to present a multicourse meal on the Thursday, Friday and Saturday night when Marc competed. Marc has already vowed to support next year's winner in a similar fashion.
FALL FOR FOODIES
Some fun culinary events happen throughout the late summer period, including the 2nd annual Savour Ottawa Harvest Table—a local foods gourmet lunch—on August 19. The lunch is prepared with local products and served family-style (with local farmers and chefs joining in).
On September 16, the Canadian Organic Growers present Feast of Fields whereby organic farmers are teamed with local chefs for a delicious feast as attendees visit each team to taste their wares.
September 30 brings the second-ever Harvest Noir, a gourmet outdoor pop-up local foods picnic. People dress in their finest black outfits, and are advised of the "secret" location at the last minute.